We un-decked the halls this weekend and I decided to pull out some long forgotten bins under the stairs to make a bit more room for holiday decorations. One of the boxes was "old computer books" that I filled and put away under there when I moved in and hadn't looked in since.
I took possession of my home and moved here in October...of 1999 😬
Shall we explore what this time capsule has to offer?
Wow look at these license terms...
"You may not...use this program outside of the US or Canada"
I wonder if BSA agents followed people who went on a trip to Mexico with their luggabe PCs to make sure they didn't open AutoCAD
Since this is a student edition I will probably have to go back to school to run this, or I'll get visited by a man in a dark suit and sunglasses
Well at least the license is concise and clear 🤷♂️
Behold..."Informix Error Messages"...aka the "DevOops Manual"
628 glorious pages of nothing but numeric error codes and their meanings
Ok now for something else out of the Old Computer Books bin...
I am a control systems/automation engineer by training so Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs) are the computers I am supposed to be an expert in.
PLCs are at least as terrible as any other computer TBH.
Quarter century later and these damn PLC-5s and SLC-500s still come back to haunt me
This PLC stuff is from a time not long after Rockwell International bought ICOM software because their Allen Bradley division was so Bad at Software that most of their PLC users bought the 3rd party programming software from ICOM.
So in Rockwell tradition of the time, if you can beat them buy them.
Thus ICOM branding was still lurking around
This is a special copy of v1.8 provided as part of my Citrix Certified Administrator ™️ training.
It had sneak preview content providing Windows 2000 compatibility not yet available to the public!
Besides the installation media still in the box (!) The reference docs are on CD so the stack of printed material is small.
Bonus content: a full CD archive of csnweb.com so you don't have to wait for all the Flash™️ content to crawl its way into your browser over your 56k modem!
Yeah order of install matters. If you installed this before selecting and installing the "terminal services" component of WinNT it can only result in mass hysteria.
Hence the post it applied to the cover of this admin guide.
It was well into this century before it was commonplace to provide serious dependency checks it seems.
I was blessed with the good fortune of receiving my training in a Very Special certification session.
In addition to becoming Certifiable we each went home with a jar of Sockarooni pasta sauce, a bottle of balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing and a VHS copy of "The Towering Inferno"*
*DVD available by mail for a small postage and handling fee
From the dates here it does appear this bin was indeed opened at least once since it established its home under the stairs after moving in here, but not long after.
Nothing else thus far has a 21st century date on it.
I suspect it was my first spring cleaning. In late spring of 2000 my employer went bankrupt (pop!) and I was invited to avail myself of some items in lieu of accrued vacation payout that would not be forthcoming as I packed up.
This and the Rockwell kit was likely added then.
OK this stuff is kinda at the bottom of this old bin, and so it's certainly of the past century. Indeed we may be descending into the tail end of the 1980s here
I used WordPerfect 5.1 until people started looking at me funny for using it.
The Que book "Using WordPerfect" was very useful and well used. The Bantam book about the macros was too though it was WAY more extensive than I ever needed.
WP had very powerful and underappreciated macro capabilities.
Laser printers used to be so exotic and mysterious that they warranted a whole chapter on its own.
What is your Font Strategy? How do you use Cartridge Fonts? (If it doesn't work try blowing on it before plugging it into the printer!) How do you install soft fonts?
You don't even want to know how you'd distribute these fonts with a WP file!
Well...eventually I did go over to the dark side.
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